Will Weiner expose political child sex ring in a plea bargain?
In recent weeks, according to some of the people familiar with the matter, attorneys for Mr. Weiner have had discussions with federal prosecutors in Manhattan in hopes of dissuading them from bringing charges, or at least from bringing the most serious one: production of child pornography, which carries a 15-year mandatory minimum prison sentence upon conviction.
Mr. Weiner could face the production charge, some of the people familiar with the case say, because he allegedly solicited explicit images from the teenager.
Prosecutors also are weighing other charges, including receipt of child pornography, for which conviction carries a five-year mandatory minimum, and possession of child pornography, which has no mandatory minimum. Legal experts say receipt and possession encompass virtually the same misconduct, but the two charges are a way to give prosecutors more discretion in their charging decisions.